Gypsy Boy on the Run: My Escape from a Life Among the Romany Gypsies

Mikey Walsh. St. Martin’s, $24.99 (320p) ISBN 978-1-250-02187-8
Walsh’s debut work, the autobiographical Gypsy Boy, was widely acclaimed in the U.S. and the author’s native U.K. for its unflinching portrait of growing up in the hypermasculine culture of a typical Romany Gypsy community in England. In his new book, Walsh continues the narrative from his previous book (in which he describes regular beatings by his father and ongoing sexual abuse by his uncle), and then recounts the difficulties that he faced at age 15 when he finally decided that “running away from everything I had ever known” is his only chance at living life on his own. His eagerness to leave is also driven by his acceptance of being gay, something that would never be tolerated by his father or his Gypsy community (although his mother is a supportive person throughout the book). The rest of the book is a relentless depiction of Walsh “on the run” as he moves from Leeds to Manchester to London, surviving through various odd jobs and a university acting program. Through all this, his angry father pursues him, offering a bounty for anyone who can find his son and bring him home. After Walsh returns home to confront both his father and his uncle, he achieves a resolution to the cultural tensions he has felt his entire life. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 12/17/2012
Release date: 03/12/2013
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Paperback - 306 pages - 978-1-4447-2022-8
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Open Ebook - 320 pages - 978-1-250-02188-5
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